Late tally pushes Aviators past Mill Rats

LAFAYETTE, IN – A sacrifice fly by Ethan Bedgood in the bottom of the eighth inning provided the go-ahead run as the Lafayette Aviators defeated the Johnstown Mill Rats 6-5 in Prospect League action on Tuesday night.

With the score tied at five, Drew Behling led off the home half of the eighth with a triple over the head of Jake Casey in center field. Bedgood brought home Behling just two pitches later with a fly ball to left field to put Lafayette in front.

Connor Fries followed by pitching with a scoreless ninth to earn the save, setting down the Mill Rats in order while recording two strikeouts. Drew Switzer claimed the win on the mound for the Aviators after throwing two scoreless innings of relief. Johnstown’s Sean Furlong took the loss.

Seven different Mill Rats recorded one hit in the contest. Casey doubled and scored twice. Lukas Torres drove in two runs. Mack Higuchi, Sam Mast and Chase Cromer each chipped in an RBI.

Johnstown was hampered by four errors. After the Mill Rats jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first, the Aviators answered with four runs in the bottom half helped by two Mill Rats miscues. 

The Mill Rats tied the game in the top of the third after Sam Mast and Cromer recorded RBI singles and Torres plated a run with a groundout. Lafayette went right back ahead, 5-4, in the bottom half courtesy of another Johnstown error on a failed pickoff attempt.

Higuchi evened the score in the sixth with an RBI single. In his second start of the season, Chrisitan Hack earned a no-decision after throwing five innings, allowing five runs (two earned) on seven hits while walking two and striking out four. Sean Casteel tossed two scoreless frames. 

Johnstown (4-2) faces Lafayette to close off its two-game series with the Aviators on Wednesday night at 7 p.m.